Wow! Our luck with this beautiful weather just keeps holding. No matter what Billie Joe Armstrong says, I’m glad I’m not sleeping through this September.
I did sleep a little extra this morning, though, and by the time I got to the pond, there were already two guys taking pictures of the wood ducks on the west lawn, so I said good morning to the young night-heron on the east side and moved on to the river.
On my way, I spotted this little character who was wondering if I was really gonna take yet another squirrel picture, but who could resist that face, so yes, I did.
As I got to the water, I was greeted by another little cutie, this red-eyed vireo hopping around a willow tree hanging over the water.
Out on the water, one of the hooded mergansers was still here and taking a break from hunting crayfish at the moment.
But this wood duck hen was busy feasting on the latest fly hatch that was all over the water surface.
Back on shore yet another little cutie, this ruby-crowned kinglet was also hopping from branch to branch. After summering in the UP, or points north, it’s on its way to Tennessee, Kentucky, or points south, so it better eat up.
But wait. There’s more! The trees along the river were really alive this morning, and this female American redstart was contributing her splashes of color to the show.
Back out on the water, a pair of Canada geese were repeatedly dipping their heads into the water as they circled each other. If it were March or April, I’d have expected them to take it to the next level. I wonder if the pair with three good wings between them, who were also there this morning, looked on and reminisced about when they were young.
Meanwhile, more wood duck drakes in all their finery are showing up.
And a blue heron was watching it all from the island.
As I headed south, I spotted another little bird in a tree hanging out over the water, and upon closer inspection, it turned out to be a goldfinch, of which we’ve seen plenty lately. There were a few of them, however, and they all seemed to be heading to the ground, so I followed them to this surprising little scene.
I don’t know what they were after exactly, but I counted nine of them down on the mud, and they didn’t startle as I would have expected, so they must have been after something important. I hope nobody lost their keys.
One of them even had on a leg band! You can see it in the lower left of the image below. Wild, huh? That is a definite first for me.
Finally, I could hear plenty of woodpeckers working in the trees above, and here sharp-looking hairy one.
Lastly, the asters continue their pageant of colors, and here’s a bumble bee on a pretty, little, white one.